Nashwauk City History

It is believed that Nashwauk was named after a river in New Brunswick, Canada. The word is said to be from the Algonquin language and means "land between". Northern Minnesota was a vast forest land occupied only by Indians. First by the Sioux and later by the Chippewa.

The first to come to the Nashwauk area in the 1880's were loggers. Most permanent settlers did not come until after 1900 when mining of iron ore became a reality. The town was the first mining community to develop in Itasca County. The first ore was shipped in 1902 from the Hawkins mine. On May 26, 1902 forty acres was deeded to the Nashwauk Realty Company and the town was platted. Nashwauk was incorporated on January 12, 1903 and boasted a population of 220.

The first officers of Nashwauk were:

President-John R. McLean

Recorder-Paul Tweed

Trustee-Ed Larson

Trustee-Ed Logan

Trustee-A. McWilliams

Treasurer-Erick Johnson

The first ordinance passed, was one regulating the sale and consumption of liquor. Not at all surprising considering there were 21 saloons in town!  The post office was registered in 1902. Board sidewalks appeared in 1903.The tents and log huts began disappearing as permanent homes were built. In 1904 the public waterworks was turned on. Electric street lights were turned on in 1906. Nashwauk was the first to have a sanitation system in 1908. By 1910 the population had exploded to 2080 and grew to 2778 by 1920.

Over the years  the city has grown and prospered. Those who leave the area always seem to return even if it is only for a few days.  It is a place to relax and remember the "good old days" of growing up in a small community.

In 2003 Nashwauk will celebrate it"s Centennial.  Even after 100 years, Nashwauk is still a thriving community that retains it small town charm.